It’s been four years since the death of his mother and Dele knew over the past few years what “life” truly was. He had grown up way beyond his peers because of the responsibility of taking care of his younger siblings thrown suddenly upon his shoulders. It would have been easier if their dad been able to perform his own duties as a father to them but he also had gotten bedridden due to a motorcycle accident he had while trying to hustle for money to take care of his children.
Their landlord had been so magnanimous, upon hearing of his father’s incapacitation, had told them to halt on payment of rent until they were able to come out of their predicament. Dele heard Uncle Bade once telling his dad that men like their landlord don’t exist again, though he didn’t understand what he meant but he had an intuition that it meant the landlord had done a great thing for them. Uncle Bade still visited once in a while when he had the chance and would buy yams and groundnut oil for the children. He never stopped blaming himself for the death of his brother’s wife.
Dele had to stop going to school, though a public school but his uniform had torn to the extent one could bury a human being in the hole that had carved itself carefully into it. His younger brother and sister still went courtesy of a neighbour who had children their ages, who shared their uniforms with them.
Dele was always at his father’s beck and call, they could not afford to employ a nurse to care for him. His late mother’s siblings came some time ago to take away Dele and his siblings with the promise to put them in better schools and help to train them but his father had vehemently refused. They had never supported their sister’s getting married to him and had stayed away from her for years because they felt she disgraced the family by marrying him.
She had not come from affluence and they wanted her to get married to a richer suitor who would liberate their family from poverty but when she insisted that her mind was made up, they hated her for it. She had let go of the jackpot they would have gotten if she had gotten married to a rich man.
Dele prayed they would forcefully take himself and his siblings away but they did not and it made Dele question their motive for coming, maybe they were forced to come as an act of obligation to the memory of their only sister.
Things became tough for Dele and his family, kind neighbours who often gave them meals had reduced the number of times they did so. The money Uncle Bade usually gave to them reduced when he claimed his business had been bad hence could not give them as regularly as he used to. He called Dele aside the last time he came visiting:
“Dele, well done. Your father told me how well you take care of him. Your children also will take care of you when you grow old and not able to fend for yourself again”
“Amen” replied Dele
“Look here Dele, nobody choses what path life takes him through, but when life throws us curved balls, we have to just find a way to adjust”
“You have become the man in this house now and you need to fend for your younger siblings, take care of them and ensure nothing bad happens to them. Your father is incapacitated and cannot do so much from where he is”
Dele nodded slowly and hot tears trickled down his face, he knew uncle Bade was saying the truth but he felt he was just too young to shoulder the responsibilities of the whole family. His uncle wiped the tears from his eyes and held him in a tight embrace, promising to be there for them every step of the way.
He gave his brother a miserly sum of money and bade them goodbye, he promised to see them the following week as he had to travel to Oshogbo for a business deal he had been onto and it involved a huge sum of money if he won it. The contract was for the roofing of twenty buildings in a newly built mini estate. He bade them goodbye and left.
“Hurry up Sam or you will be late” Tyler screamed from the foot of the stairs. Stella and Betty were already downstairs anxiously waiting for Sam. They had been invited to a party at Ikeja and Tyler was mandated to come with his family. Their host also chaired a company Tyler had eyes on and he hoped he could use the party as a mini business discussion and probably close the deal right there and then.
Sam eventually waltzed down the stairs, looking taller than his sixteen years of age. He looked every inch like his father and Tyler was always proud to show him off to friends and family whenever he had the opportunity. Sam was his only son and reminded Tyler of himself when he was much younger, he also hoped his son would inherit his strong business acumen but Sam had fallen in love with the sciences and hoped to be a pilot instead. Stella straightened his tie as he joined them at the foot of the stairs, checked that everything was in place and called the house help to lock the door after them.
The Lekki traffic was terrible that day and Tyler carefully maneuvered through it. They still had an hour before the event was scheduled to start. Just as they descended the Anthony bridge to link to Ikorodu road, they encountered another traffic and this time it was a stand still, the cause of the traffic unknown. Suddenly a scruffy looking teenage boy almost same age as Sam, ran from nowhere and stood beside Tyler’s window. His eyes were sunken and clothes tattered, he stretched out his hands begging for alms but Tyler ignored him, then later wind down the glass a little and shouted angrily at the boy to get away from his car. “Brat” he called him.
“Dear, this boy must be hungry, look at his eyes and I’m sure he is all bones beneath that torn clothes. I would like to take him on as one of our beneficiaries, what do you think dear?”
“Stella, this NGO thing sometimes make you deluded, can’t you see this one looks like a criminal, I forbid you to” blurted Tyler. “I am sure he is planted here by his cohorts and the moment I wind down my glass of my window and hand him some money, boom! they spring a surprise on us”
“I disagree, you can stay in the car and analyze as much as you can but I am getting down and would give the boy my details, I can feel it, this boy needs help” Stella said as she made to unhook her seat belt, thankfully, the traffic showed no signs of giving way at any moment.
Tyler got furious and shouted at Stella, even the children cringed at the back seat. “What part of “No” don’t you understand? Is this how you go about playing super hero? Are you doing this for charity or self-recognition? You want the people in the cars around to see me as a villain and you as the messiah right?”
“I am sorry dear, I didn’t mean to undermine your authority and I only wanted to help the little boy off the street. Do you mind if I called Nkechi to come with the team to help him?” Tyler didn’t give her an answer so she went ahead and called her PA, Nkechi to come to the Anthony bridge area to pick up the boy. She described him as much as she could and hoped her PA would get there on time.
Stella sat in her seat, angry at her husband for behaving the way he did and especially in front of their children. Here she was trying to rid the street of homeless children and the man who swore his unflinching support couldn’t stand to see her do the very thing he knew she loved to do. She was also angry that he made everything about self-aggrandizement. She sat quietly throughout the remaining part of the journey and put up a pretense when they arrived at the party. She called her children aside and made excuses for their father, claiming that he must have had a rough week, hence the attitude and not that he was an uncaring man.
She kept on monitoring Nkechi on phone to make sure she found the young boy but Nkechi and the driver who went with her searched everywhere to no avail. A groundnut seller, sitting by the side of the road claimed to have seen the young boy but that he left already. She also claimed that she had not seen him before that day as she knew all the beggars that begged along that axis. Nkechi eventually left the scene and headed back with the driver.
The party was well attended and as usual, Tyler was having a great time. Stella on the other hand couldn’t help thinking about the boy she had not been able to help. She hoped their path would cross again soon.
Uncle Bade got the contract to roof the mini estate he submitted a proposal for at Oshogbo. The sum was huge and he quickly deployed his team of carpenters to the site and work began in earnest. He made sure he engaged the services of agile men to work for him because of the complexity of climbing at sites.
Uncle Bade was not one to get a contract and leave it to his workers to handle, he preferred to be hands-on. The scaffold was set up and they began work and on the third day on site had completed two buildings. Usually on site, food peddlers hawk and save the workers ample time that would have been used looking for a good canteen. The amala (Local Nigerian food made from yam or unripe plantain) woman shouted on top of her voice and site workers could be seen scampering to get down and buy some to eat. Then snap!! One of the legs of the scaffold broke there was a loud scream but before help could get to him, uncle Bade had crashed to the ground, hitting his head on scaffold as he came crashing down and breaking his ankle in the process.
He was rushed to the hospital as he had suffered a concussion to the head and the ankle needed to be taken care of. He was also slipping in and out of consciousness most of the time and the doctor attributed it to the head injury. Tests were carried out to ascertain the extent of the injury and thankfully it was mild and would be fine in a matter of weeks, claimed the doctor. His wife was contacted and he was discharged two days after but referred to another hospital in Lagos to continue his treatment.
Dele got home panting from running and sat pondering over in his mind, it had been three months since the news of Uncle Bade and he didn’t understand why his uncle was still unwell. They told them the doctor assured the family that it would take a matter of weeks but three months had passed. Dele’s eyes settled on his father who lay on the bed fast asleep. How were they supposed to survive without Uncle Bade? Thankfully, their mother’s elder brother had come to take Yemisi to his home so she can be well taken care of, leaving him and Bode with their father. He hoped more help would come and one by one they would enjoy a better life than what they had presently.
He peeped out of the window to check up on Bode who was playing with the other children in the compound, without a care in the world. While staring, his mind drifted to the event that happened earlier in the day. He had left the scene crying and wondering where the God his mother had spoken about was, why would he let bad things happen to them at all and not send help to them on time?
He had just finished helping out at the carpentry workshop near Anthony village where his father once worked. The men there let him run simple errands and in turn pay him a little stipend they knew he would take home, that was their own way of helping out. Unfortunately, the men all complained that the week had not been favorable, hence didn’t have enough to give him to take home. He knew there was nothing at home to eat, the neighbours who were feeding them had also withdrew their help, every one of them had one issue of other there were also battling with. On his way out of the workshop, he had tripped when the end of a plank caught his shirt and tore it halfway through, the shirt had seen better days though.
He started the slow journey home and wondered what they would eat that day. He thought of selling pure water in traffic but he didn’t even have any cash to start with. He saw a bus and begged the driver he would like to be his conductor for the day but he was shoved off as he had no prior experience. He left dejectedly and decided to beg at least to have food in their belly that day. He had never done it before but a trial won’t kill, he thought.
He had summoned courage and ran to the first big car he saw, hoping the occupant would take pity on him and give him a substantial amount, the finer the car the more money he would get he thought to himself.
He had not been not ready for the hatred and venom he saw in the eyes of the man behind the wheel. If eyes would kill, he would have been long dead. With the way the man scowled at him, he didn’t have the courage to face any other car owner and he had fled the scene and ran home. Luckily, they still had few cups of cassava flakes, so they soaked in water and took it as dinner that evening. He could see that his father had been crying and knew he must hate the fact that he couldn’t take care of his family as he ought.
Things were not getting any better, Dele took to the streets and did anything he could to make ends meet while Bode stayed back home to care for their ailing father. He later found a building site and joined the laborers in carrying cement and blocks for the construction. On the street where the building site was, a particular uncompleted building down that street was host to a set of street boys. They looked mean and no one needed a soothsayer to tell that they were up to no good.
Most times, Dele pretended to be in a hurry whenever he was almost in front of the uncompleted building, he wanted to have nothing to do with them. On one particular morning, he had not expected to see them that early and in a bid to rush off, he tripped over a stone and fell in a ditch of dirty water. He fell face flat and in no time, he felt strong hands lifting him out of the puddle of water and as he wiped the water off his face, he found himself staring into the eyes of the meanest pair of eyes he had ever seen.
“You no dey watch where you dey go?” the mean looking guy spoke in pidgin.
“I am sorry sir” Stammered Dele
“Why you dey apologise to me? Na me be the stone wey fall you or the water wey you fall inside? See this guy oh. Wetin be your name?” he asked and Dele replied him, the thought of giving him a fake name crossed his mind but he was scared and blurted out the truth.
“My name is Dele and I work down the street”
“I know you, I see you every time you pass here, you go dey run like say dem dey pursue you. Anyway, my name na Sikiru but na Skido everybody dey call me”
“If you dey come back from work, make you branch, I want to show you something” Skido said and made Dele promise to come and see him later.
All through work that day, Dele couldn’t get his mind off Skido’s request to come and see him. He thought of not going, but there was no other route he could take unless he would kiss his manual labor job goodbye. He needed the money and decided he would see Skido but would not allow him bully him into doing anything he didn’t want to. Evening came and Dele headed home and knew he must make that stop at Skido’s. As usual, the uncompleted building had Skido and his team outside, laughing and he could see some holding cigarette sticks in their hands.
Skido sighted him when he was some meters away and left the others and walked up to Dele. Dele was shocked when Skido kept walking with him and realised they had both walked past the others. Few meters away, Skido halted and Dele stopped walking too.
“Take and use it to sort of your problems” Skido said as he stretched out his hand towards Dele. Dele could see the money in Skido’s palms and he didn’t know what to make of it.
“Take it now, abi you want to pose when it is obvious say you need the money?” Skido said with sarcasm. Dele knew taking money from someone like Skido spelt trouble and declined the offer but Skido would have none of it.
After much persuasion that it was a gift and not a loan, Dele collected the money and thanked Skido profusely. Skido convinced him he wasn’t a criminal but was into the business of buying and selling of essential commodities. Dele believed him and left the scene and Skido walked back to join his group.
Dele could not wait to get home before counting the money, his eyes got larger when he counted ten thousand naira. He would have to work every day for two months at the construction site before earning such amount as wage and he got it in one day from doing absolutely nothing; this seemed too good to be true. He ran the rest of the way home as his excitement would not allow him walk steadily. He told his father what happened and how he met a rich man where he worked who blessed him with the money but failed to add that the person was of questionable character. The next morning, he quickly paid some of the debt they owed mama Risi the rice seller and the man selling groundnut oil down the street.
He gave Bode the money he needed to buy books and made him return to school, Dele somehow felt responsible for his family and knew he would not be able to take care of them if he found his way back to school. He prepared breakfast for his father, cleaned him up and set out to work. Somehow, he hoped to see Skido again and properly thank him but there was no one at the uncompleted building. Days passed and turned into weeks, yet no sign of Skido. Dele had even almost forgotten him when he saw him again on his way from his labourer job.
Dele was excited to see Skido, though he didn’t know the reason for the excitement. He ran to meet him and thanked him for the money he received from him weeks ago and Skido waved it off saying it was not a big deal. He explained his absence was because he had been away on a business trip and bragged about how much profit he made.
“Let me find a little something for you boy” Skido said as he handed him another wad of notes. This time, Dele collected it without any restraint, even though it looked thicker than the one he gave him the last time but ran home overjoyed. His father raised concern over this good Samaritan but Dele assured him the money was clean and had nothing to fear.
Dele became a frequent face at Skido’s hangout and eventually stopped going for his labourer job, what he got from Skido was much more than his monthly wage. He was also able to prepare better meals for his father and brother. He hoped Skido would take him along for one of his business trips so he could also start making money for himself. If Skido doesn’t offer him the opportunity, he made up his mind to ask.
Sam had finished his secondary education and had secured admission to further his studies abroad. His parents were so proud of him when he was accepted into the University of London to study aeronautical engineering, he would be away for three years or more depending on what he decided to do next.
His mother travelled with him to ensure he had settled in fully before travelling back to Nigeria to continue running her charity. She was proud of what she had been able to accomplish in a few years. They had gotten more international funding and been able to take over 250 children and teenagers off the streets into foster homes and educational institutions with boarding facilities. Some of the schools gave them a huge discount to help keep the children in school. Her dreams were finally coming to reality and she was happy. The only snag in her life had been Tyler.
Tyler had become obsessed with work and taking over the world. He had risen to partner status where he worked and was full of himself for his achievements through the years. Stella had made friends with a lady she met while trying to fix some orphaned children into a home. The lady, Funke had been born blind and also suffered the sickle cell disease. Funke had been left to die by her parents but a good Samaritan had brought her to the center. What struck chord in Stella was Funke’s positive approach and view of things. Stella probed and pried, wanting to know Funke’s source of strength.
“God” Funke had said.
“How can God, who made you blind also be your source of strength? I don’t understand it? Anyways, I know God but we have not been friends for a while now. I can’t even remember when we drifted apart.” Said Stella and she truly reflected on what she said.
She had stopped going to church for years and Tyler had not helped matters. Sometimes, he closed deals on Sunday mornings and somehow she had gotten used to staying at home and used Sundays as rest days. Listening to Funke was like a wakeup call, she knew there had been an emptiness in her life, she had not been able to place a finger on it but that moment with Funke showed her the truth. She knew she didn’t need Tyler to validate her anymore, she was going to live her life to the fullest, get back her spiritual life with or without him. She left the orphanage that day a changed person.
Dele had become a part of Skido and his team, just like family and he had also learnt how to puff on a cigarette. He hated it at first but Skido convinced him he would get used to it and see that it was the best experience ever. Before long he had started smoking hemp with them and all manner of drugs.
He later found out that Skido had a boss he reported to, who was always in the shadows but called Skido when there was work to be done. Dele had been with them for a long time running minor errands and it was time to get him into the group proper. Skido had actually seen Dele as a perfect tool to also help them out in their operations. Skido told him the boss only gets to meet any new recruit after two years of joining the team but told him the nature of their business deals, it was kidnap and collection of the ransom.
Dele started going on different jobs with them and was always well rewarded. He was the one to pick up the ransom when it had been paid and ensure he was not seen. He kept his booty well hidden from the prying eyes of his father and concealed it with a wrapper before he hid it under the bed. By the time he had worked for eight months, he had been paid the sum of six hundred thousand and he just couldn’t contain himself. How could he be so rich yet unable to flaunt it? He eventually told his father about his stacked up cash but lied about how he got it.
His father was no kid, he had seen signs that Dele was not the boy he used to know. He had challenged him once and got tongue lashed for asking.
“Father, please don’t ask me such questions. Are you not the one who brought all these upon us? How do you think we have been feeding all these while? These people are God sent to me and you are condemning me?” Dele blurted.
“Dele, please I know things have been tough and I also do not wish to be incapacitated but it is what it is. Family and friends have also deserted me and you are all I have and Bode your brother. Please I sense you are doing something wrong, please my son, I don’t want to lose you” cried his father.
“Father, it is too late. I have a huge sum of money in this house. I suggest we get a bigger apartment and move out of here, I am tired of staying in this shithole”
“I will not go to a house you have rented with unclean money Dele”
“Hahahaha!!” Dele laughed “But you have been eating food cooked with unclean money” and he look with a sneer “I will do as I please father, I don’t see anyone who can stop me as it is”
“Father, I am tired of living like this when I can afford something better, I won’t stay here and if you don’t want to come with me, so be it” he said it with a note of finality and stormed out of the house.
He went back to Skido and told him he needed to get himself an apartment and a week later, he got his own flat and moved in. He waited outside his father’s house for Bode one day and hinted him about his new place and wanted Bode to join him. Bode argued he would not leave their father alone all by himself and refused to go. Dele felt everyone was against him because he had finally made money but it was money he was not willing to ever let go of.
On his eighteenth birthday, he threw a lavish party and celebrated it big. He partied all night and got himself wasted with hard drugs. He was living the life and loving it. He sends money to his father every month and doesn’t bother his head whether they spent it or not. He was making enough and couldn’t care less.
Years later, on a sunny day, they got word on the street that the son of a very wealthy big boy was in town and their boss needed them to make some findings and come up with a plan. They were not sure how long the son would stay and needed to act fast. They paid the informant more money so he could give them more information to work with.
They eventually learnt that their target loved to play golf and usually goes to the golf club on Sundays with his son. They carefully hatched a plan and when they were sure it was error proof, laid ambush for them.
On the eventful day, they tailed their car from home till they got to the golf club, waited for over five hours for them to finish. Sundays are usually free from heavy traffic and they tailed them on their way home but had switched cars, so that if the target noticed them earlier, he wouldn’t see the same car he noticed earlier and won’t suspect anything at all.
Just as they got onto a quiet road called Bourdilon, Skido and the other guys were waiting and threw an old tyre rim onto the road and their target swerved but was unsuccessful and bumped into a tree. Within seconds, Skido and his gun wielding team, commanded their target to unlock the doors and in fear, he did. They pulled his son from the passenger seat, shoved him into their own car and sped off, shooting sporadically into the air to ward off pursuers. The policemen usually surveiling the area had chosen to take the day off and patrolled another area instead.
It was so professionally carried out it took them less than fifteen minutes to carry out the kidnap. They drove onto the third mainland bridge in no time and were on their way to the hideout. Their guns were cocked and ready to shoot in case of an unexpected police checkpoint on the way. They were lucky as the only checkpoint they came across didn’t stop them and they drove to their hideout.
In no time, news had gotten out that there had been a successful kidnap of the son of Mr. Tyler Obi, Lagos big boy and brutal take over boss. Earlier in the week, news had reported how he had brutally acquired two upcoming blue chip startups and how tempers were flared in the process. So typically, tongues started wagging, ascertaining that maybe one of the aggrieved parties had carried out the kidnap.
Stella could not believe her ears when Tyler got back home that evening with news of her son’s abduction. She cried and cried and prayed to God to please save her son. She didn’t know what she’d do if anything were to happen to him. “God, I have spent many years taking care of other people’s children and not one of them had died in the process. If you truly are a caring God, please let me son come back home safely and unhurt” she cried out to God in prayer.
It had taken two days before Skido and his team contacted Tyler. He didn’t give the kidnappers a chance to talk and started shouting on top of his voice over the phone. “Do you know who I am? If anything happens to my son, I will have your heads on a platter” he swore.
Skido knew it was the ranting of a wounded man and let the rude remark pass. He informed him to tell the police to steer clear else they would hurt his son. He eventually agreed and they told him the ransom for Sam Obi would be twenty million naira and in cash and gave him two days to make the payment or they would harm his son.
Tyler informed the police of the plan and contacted his bank that he needed the twenty million naira in cash from his account and told them the cash needed to be marked so that it can be tracked. The police also deployed plain cloths detectives to be on the case so that the culprits can be bought to book.
Meanwhile, Skido and his team were making arrangements on the drop off location and who would be in the best position to pick up the cash. Dele who had become used to the pick-up activities volunteered again and they decided to pair him with another guy called Moses.
On the day of the collection, they called Tyler again and confirmed again from him that he should not involve the police, to which he replied in the affirmative. His wife was with him when the call came in and she knew he lied. Immediately the call was disconnected, she knelt and hugged his leg, begging him to obey them and just let them have the money.
“Tyler, please I am aware the bills have been marked. Must you disobey and inform the police of the drop off point? What if it backfires and we lose our son or even you in the process?”
“Don’t worry dear, I didn’t work hard for my money and end up giving it to some criminal just because he said so. I will call the police right away and inform them I have been contacted and also tell the exact location to meet me”.
“I won’t allow you do that Tyler. Don’t you watch movies? These kidnappers are professionals and would be watching from a safe distance even before your arrival and once they see any suspicious movements, they will get angry, leave and that might be the end. Tyler, please listen to me and do the right thing”
Her last statement somehow convinced him and he decided to do as his wife suggested. He waited for the call which took another two hours and the exact drop off location was given to him.
He left the house with his driver and went to the bank after he had called the bank manager. He picked up the money from the bank and made his way to the drop off location. Unknown to him, the police were tailing him as they knew he would have gotten scared by the kidnappers and not inform them of the plans anymore.
They tailed him by driving at a safe distance to avoid suspicions. Tyler got to the location and waited for the kidnappers to contact him. Dele and Moses were on a tree at the location watching him, when they were sure he had not been followed, Dele came down and walked up to Tyler’s car, gun hidden in his trousers covered with his shirt. Moses also had a gun with him on the tree.
When dele was walking up to him, Tyler felt he had seen him before but couldn’t place where. He was so sure he had seen him before and took a mental description of his features to give the police later to enable them track him down.
While Dele was walking, the police who had secretly traced Tyler quietly took position in different areas watching. Moses had not seen them as they also camouflaged with attires that looked like leaves. Dele finally got to Tyler and Tyler came out of the car but his driver sat in the car with the money and the car engine was still running to make a quick escape if the need arose.
“Where is my son you fool?” Tyler blurted. “I have the money you want and won’t bring it out until I see him”
“We do not carry our victim around in case people like you try to play smart” responded Dele and he brought out his phone and dialed the safe house where Sam was being kept. He handed the phone over to Tyler to speak to his son.
“Hello, Sam is that you?”
“Yes dad, it’s me Sam. Dad please cooperate with them so that this can all be over”
“Are they hurting you at all?” quizzed Tyler
“No dad, on the contrary, I am being treated like a king. They said the expenses I have incurred would be deducted from the ransom, so please dad, kindly pay up so I can be free”
“Listen son, I ….” But Dele grabbed the phone from his hands and cut him short.
“You have said enough and that is confirmation that your son is fine. You pay us and in one hour, you will have your son back”
The police didn’t know Moses was on the tree but knew Dele couldn’t have come alone and springing out of hiding would put Tyler and even his son in danger, so they stayed hidden.
Suddenly Tyler lost his mind. The thought of parting with such a huge sum of money to strangers was too much for him to handle and he grabbed Dele by the shirt.
“You swine, have you ever had to work for a dime in your life? Taking money that doesn’t belong to you, I won’t let it” Dele was shocked but managed to stay calm.
“Get hold of yourself Oga, all we want is the exchange to go smoothly or don’t you want to see your son again?” and in that moment of anger, Dele suddenly remembered the man that growled at him years ago when he begged him for money and he saw the recognition, it was unmistakably the same man!
Dele was angry at the way Tyler held onto his shirt but more furious because he remembered how Tyler had not even given him the opportunity to beg him for money years ago before chasing him off the side of the car that day and he was livid with rage. He held on to Tyler’s shirt too, shaking him viciously.
Moses was shocked at the turn of things, the police too were not sure what to do but had to stay alert in case of any eventualities and in seconds, they saw Dele pull out his gun from behind his shirt and point it at Tyler and in split seconds, he pulled the trigger and Tyler fell down in a pool of blood. Moses jumped down from the tree and ran to meet Dele, the driver couldn’t drive the car because he was in shock.
The police also came out of hiding and there was sporadic shooting. Moses and Dele fired at the police but they were outnumbered. Dele got shot on the head and fell down onto Tyler’s body. Moses got a bullet in the leg and he surrendered his gun. Tyler’s car was badly ridden with bullet because Dele and Moses used it as a shield but the driver was lucky as he was unhurt.
They grabbed Moses by the collar and dragged him into the police van and called for the ambulance to take away the bodies of Dele and Tyler. They called for backup and drove to the safe house with Moses.
Moses knew it was over and didn’t want to be the only one who gets punished and decided to cooperate with the police, they also promised him a lighter sentence.
He called Skido and spoke in feigned excitement despite the pain from his bleeding leg.
“Skido, we don make am. We don collect am and we dey on our way”
“Hope nobody see you oh?” Skido asked
“No Skido, clean and clear, expect us in five minutes” as they were already two houses from the safe house. As soon as Moses hung up, Skido and the others went into jubilation and let down their guard. They went and poured themselves drinks, waiting for Moses and Dele to show up any moment. The next knock on the door was Moses and once they heard his voice, opened it but were shocked when he was accompanied by policemen.
Their guns were not on them as they had not envisaged an attack. The police raided them all, five in number with the injured Moses. Sam was set free and taken to the hospital to check him out before they take him home. He had not been informed of his father’s death. Skido refused to name who their sponsor was, he claimed he would die rather than betray his boss.
When Stella tried her husband’s phone and it rang without being answered severally, she felt something was wrong but never thought the news of Tyler dying was what it would be. When the doorbell rang and Sam and the driver with some policemen came in, she feared the worst. They broke the sad news to her and her world came crashing at the news, Sam ran to her and held her amidst sobs and screaming.
Tyler was buried and Sam decided to stay longer to stay with his mother and sister. Dele’s body was unclaimed as Skido didn’t even know where he lived, so no one could inform his father or brother of his demise.
The police still haven’t been able to find Skido’s boss as he wasn’t saying anything. Skido and his team were sentenced to life imprisonment with hard labor.
Every opportunity we have in life to help someone in need, let us not relent, for you may never know who you might have rescued from the path of destruction…
Copyright © 2018 Oluwakemi Odusanya
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